The National Rifle Association posted an old video of Mike Johnson opposing gun safety measures, essentially bragging about how it has the new House speaker in its pocket.
The NRA’s Sunday night tweet was also just a few days after a gunman killed 18 people in Maine, the biggest mass shooting in the state’s history and the country’s deadliest mass shooting of the year thus far.
In the 2019 video, Johnson—who is an NRA member—says that gun ownership is one of Americans’ “fundamental freedoms” and accuses Democrats of infringing on basic rights by trying to pass gun safety regulations.
“As NRA members, we understand the Second Amendment is grounded in fundamental freedoms,” Johnson says. “We make the point on the Hill all the time when these gun bills come up and when Democrats are trying to push their agenda on the people. We remind them that the Second Amendment is grounded in those fundamental freedoms―those inalienable rights that we have to personal liberty and personal security and private property.”
The NRA’s boastful tweet came at the tail end of a weekend that saw 12 different mass shootings, according to the Gun Violence Archive. The nonprofit defines a mass shooting as an attack when at least four people are injured or killed, excluding the shooter.
Between Friday and Sunday, shooters opened fire in Indianapolis, Chicago, Atlanta, and Tampa, as well as cities in Texas, Kansas, Maryland, New Mexico, Ohio, and Johnson’s home state of Louisiana.
Last week, the state of Maine waited in terror during a two-day hunt for a man who killed 18 people and wounded 13 more in the town of Lewiston. Authorities found the shooter’s body in a trailer on Friday. He appeared to have shot himself.
There have been 580 mass shootings in 2023 so far, which averages to about two mass shootings per day. These attacks have resulted in 616 people killed, 2,426 people injured, and countless people traumatized.
But according to Johnson, “at the end of the day, the problem is the human heart.”
“It’s not the guns, it’s not the weapons,” he insisted on Fox News a day after the Maine shooting.